Adventures in Dangerous Art
I'm learning the art (or is it a craft?) of stained glass. At this weblog, I record progress, note useful links, and document flesh wounds.


The Art League
Where I took a lead class and a 3D construction class.

Weisser Glass Studio
Where I buy supplies, and where I took a foil class.

Virginia Stained Glass Co.
Where I buy supplies if I happen to be in Springfield and if they happen to have what I want.

Great prices on supplies, a lively and helpful Glass Chat message board, and excellent Technical Tips on stained glass tools and techniques.

Glass Galleries Links List
A list of Glass Chat users who've uploaded photos of their work.

The StoreFinder: Stained Glass Store Front
Lots of articles. Tutorials
Even more articles. Particularly recommended: "Anatomy of a design" and "Wood frames."
Courtesy of Google Groups.

Nancy's Beginner Tips and Tricks
Scoring, breaking, soldering, finishing, and more.

Splinter Removal Tips

Syndicate this site
Someone out there is using XML for something... right?

Movable Type
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It's a glass cutter.
November 22, 2006: Jewels Ahoy

My jewels came. They're faceted, and so they're sparkly, and so they're unreasonably fun to play with. But they're also really tough to get a decent picture of with my one functioning camera.

Also in the photo is a little triangle of red glass left over from the crocus panel. I'll need to cut a whole pile of teeny little half-circles, half the size of my jewels, for the places in my design where red circles are cut off by the zinc frame. It's not that you can't cut the glass jewels---you can---it's that at their thickest points, they're a lot thicker than regular glass; they won't slide into the channel of the zinc framing. So I'll be using some leftover red cathedral glass in those places; the color match isn't 100% exact but those pieces will be so small that the mismatch will only be noticeable if you're looking.

I also made some phone calls today to find out about replacing my IGU's. That's window-biz jargon (which I learned about twenty minutes ago) that stands for "insulated glass unit." You may recall, my existing IGUs are of recent vintage and in fine working order, but they have that pesky "decorative" grid between the two panes of glass that would end up showing through my stained glass panels and bugging me 'til the end of time. After some dead ends along the lines of "we have a 5-window minimum" and "we don't work in Silver Spring," I got in touch with a nice lady named Jennifer at Rockville's Bel Pre Glassworks, a company with a glass cutter incorporated into their logo, which made me smile because I'm a nerd. Jennifer was far more patient and helpful than I had any right to expect, given the scope of my itty-bitty two-window project. To order new IGUs, which I or my handy husband would need to install ourselves, she ballparked me a price of just under sixty-eight dollars a window for tempered safety glass, or just over forty-five for annealed glass, per. That's way less than I was afraid of; some prices I saw online for complete, DIY casement windows (including frames and sashes and other stuff I don't need) were in the $175 per window range and that wasn't going to fly. But if I can banish my grids for ninety bucks? Might just.

Here's the fun part, though: to be absolutely 100% sure that what we order has the right measurements, the best thing to do is going to be to take our IGUs right out of their frames and take 'em up to Rockville to have a pro get all the dimensions. Doesn't look like that'd be hard---just a few screws---but see, it's about to be December out there (in fact, today's weather feels more January to me). And this time of year, you really want to have glass actually in your window frames. If I had the windows out of the frames for as little as an hour, I bet that'd be plenty time enough for it to get very, very cold in my living room. I guess some heavy-gauge contractor-style trash bags and duct tape might suffice for an afternoon, but those windows are on the side of the house facing the retired guy whose self-appointed job it is to police the lawn maintenance and general upkeep of every home on the block, and I think having trash-bag window panes, even temporarily, will send my poor neighbor right over the edge.

I will have to consider the pet containment implications of having a couple of 14 by 32 inch holes in our living room wall, as well. Although I kind of wouldn't mind if one of the cats got out, if it were just long enough for them to realize "the warm's in the house, and the food's in the house: oh crap." Teach 'em a valuable lesson.

Posted by Michelle on November 22, 2006 03:07 PM

Hi... how are the dogwood windows coming along? You haven't blogged in quite a while!

Posted by: leslie on April 9, 2007 11:39 AM
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